One of my boyhood heroes died yesterday at the age of 90. I'm sure there will be many obituaries over the next few days.
Wikipedia said:Lionel Peter Twiss (born 23 July 1921, died 31 August 2011) OBE DSC and Bar was a British pilot, who held the World Air Speed Record as the first man to fly at a speed greater than 1,000 mph.
Educated at Sherborne School, he had been rejected by the Fleet Air Arm as a pilot but when the Second World War broke out, he was accepted as a Naval Airman Second Class. After training at 14 Elementary and Reserve Flying Training School at Castle Bromwich and Yeovilton, he was employed on target-towing duties in the Orkney Islands. He then served with the MSFU on catapult ships flying Hawker Hurricanes. During the Malta Convoys in 1942 he flew with 807 Squadron, on Fairey Fulmars, from the carrier HMS Argus. For these operations he received the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC). Later in the year the Squadron converted to the Supermarine Seafires flying from HMS Furious for the Operation Torch landings in North Africa. During the Allied landings in Algeria and Morocco he added a bar to his DSC, gazetted in March 1943. By this time he had shot down one Italian aircraft (a Fiat CR.42 on 14 May 1942) and damaged another.
He then flew long-range intruder operations over Germany from Ford Naval Air Station, developing night fighter tactics with the RAF's Fighter Interception Unit. He claimed two Ju 88's shot down during 1944. During the war Twiss began to get opportunities to fly new aircraft and began test flying in late 1944 in the United States. By the end of the war he was a Lieutenant Commander. In 1945 he attended No. 3 Course at the Empire Test Pilots' School then based at RAF Cranfield...